CBI Tournament Canceled Amid Coronavirus Fears

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - MARCH 07: Coronavirus advice posters hang in the Stadium during the Sky Bet League One match between Sunderland and Gillingham at Stadium of Light on March 7, 2020 in Sunderland, England. (Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images)

The NBA is limiting media contact with players and may play in empty arenas. Colleges are refusing to play games. Some conferences have canceled their yearly postseason tournaments. Today, the CBI announced its own cancelation.

Though it may not seem like too big of a deal, it could very well just be the tip of the iceberg.

Coronavirus Fears Lead to Canceled CBI Tournament

College Basketball Invitation Canceled

The College Basketball Invitational — better known as the CBI — has been canceled amid fears of spreading the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19. The virus continues to reak havoc across the globe, and it is now spilling into the wide world of sports.

As fear and panic spread across the United States, concerns about spreading the disease are on the rise. Sporting events have been a popular target across the world. Limiting the number of people in attendance has become a counter-measure to spreading the virus.

The Gazelle Group, who founded the tournament in 2007, issued a statement on the cancelation Wednesday morning.

“Due to the uncertainty about the coronavirus and the impact it is having on college campuses across the country, we have decided to cancel the 2020 College Basketball Invitational,” the group said. “As colleges and universities are making difficult and complex health and risk management decisions about conducting sporting events, it became apparent to us that this was the most prudent course of action.”

Future Cancelations Remain Possible

The CBI cancelation is not a ground-breaking development. However, all eyes are now on the NCAA Tournament and the NIT as teams and fans wonder about the future of the events. It remains possible — though highly unlikely — that one or both of the events could be the next victims of COVID-19.

The Ivy League was the first organization to officially cancel their postseason tournament, a previously unprecedented move. Now, it may quickly become the norm as the coronavirus continues to spread across the nation.

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